Tuesday, January 10, 2017

Why Manitowoc Ice Machines UR 0140A NEO is a Top Rated Commercial Ice Machine

This review of Manitowoc Ice Machines is for Manitowoc UY-0140A NEO 26″. It is an Air Cooled Undercounter Ice Machine with a 90 lb. Storage Bin. This machine makes only half dice ice, a popular size for most restaurants.

manitowoc ice machines review

The Manitowoc UY-0140A NEO 26" Air Cooled Undercounter is one of the top products for Manitowoc ice machines. It produces hundreds of pounds of ice per day despite its compact size. That is why it is a popular choice for many restaurant owners.

Let's check out why. But first, a quick snapshot of the company and my summary of the review.

Product Name: Manitowoc UY-0140A NEO
Price: Retail at $1,770.00 - $1900.00 depending on where you buy
Shipping Cost: Free in the USA by most sellers
Owner/Manufacturer: Manitowoc Foodservice Inc.
Corporate Headquarters: Florida, United States
Market Reach: In the USA and Global Presence and Support
Manufacturing Facility: It will close all the US plants by early 2017 and move to new facilities in Tijuana and Monterrey, Mexico
Manitowoc UY-0140A NEO Overall Rank: 4.7 out of 5.0

Manitowoc Ice Machines Specification

This is a compact all-in-one under counter ice machine with specification as follows:

UY-0140A NEO 26"
115 volts
153 lbs.
26 in.
28 in.
38.5 in

Verdict: An ideal size if you are looking for a space-saving under counter ice machine with an ample 90 lb. bin.

Things to Consider Before Buying:

#1: UY-0140A NEO Features

Check out these features and see if meet your requirements:

  • 'Smart' features with 'full bin' and 'time to get it service' indicators.

  • "Clean" button will start the machine's self-sanitation process.

  • The bigger opening provides easier access to ice.

  • Produce half dice size cubes with unique “rhomboid” shape (3/8 in x 1 1/8 in x 7/8 in). Ideal for low to high volume ice production.

  • The ice zone is sealed, reduce chances of water leaking.

  • Fast cleaning with removable parts for water trough, damper door, and distribution tube.

  • Delay functions give you the option to slow down ice production for slow periods or when you're closed. Delay start option: 4, 12 & 24 hours.

  • AlphaSan- antimicrobial is added to the selected key internal components. Hence, fewer cleaning.

  • Energy saving by using 10% less energy and 25% less water than comparable models.

  • Routine cleaning and maintenance are easier with no tool required for quick access.

  • Optional item: Luminice® II Growth Inhibitor will restrict the bacteria and yeast growth in the food zone.

  • Optional item: Arctic Pure® water filters, designed exclusively for ice machine applications. Forward sliding storage bin allows easy access to refrigeration components without moving the entire ice machine
    UL, NSF, & AHRI certified

Verdict: Manitowoc UY-0140A NEO has features that satisfy your checklist of things to consider before buying.

#2: Air Cooled vs. Water Cooled: Which One Should You Buy?

The cooling system to lower the refrigeration system temperature is either air-cooled or water-cooled. So what are the differences?

  • Air-cooled will take in the surrounding air around the ice machine to cool the condenser. It requires cooler environment and not suitable if placed in a hotter area such as next to your fryer! The machine is also quite noisy and emits warm exhaust air. But it is cheaper than a water cooled machine.

  • Water-cooled, as the name suggests, use water to cool the condenser. It is more efficient and quite but the cost is higher. If you live in an area where water rate is high, operating cost can go up. It requires an extra 100 gallons of water to produce 100 lb of ice. Once utilized, this water will go down the drain. This large volume of water is expensive. Some state has banned water cooled ice machine due to water shortage. It also has a negative environmental impact. Reasons why ENERGY STAR, an environmental agency, do not certify and put their seal on any water-cooled ice machines.

Verdict: New design for an air-cooled compressor is now more efficient than beforeOperating costs for an air-cooled machine is also lower. Hence, with its Energy Star certification, the air cooled Manitowoc UY-0140A NEO is a good bet.

#3: Ice Type & Size - Half Dice Ice - Its Advantages

What type of ice do you need? You have to decide as different models will produce different shapes.

Yep, one of the ice machine's selection criteria is the ice shape that it makes. Each shape has its own benefits and drawbacks.

Half dice ice is a smaller version of the cube or dice ice but it is the most versatile type of ice. The high ice-to-water ratio means half dice ice has more cooling power i.e. it will not water down drinks as fast. Thus lowering production needs even when the restaurant is busy. This shape is also ideal for quick service. Hence, the reason for its popularity in the restaurant and convenience store. If you check brochures of other brands, half dice ice is like their half cube and small cube ice.

Verdict: Manitowoc UY-0140A NEO's half dice ice will suit most restaurant owner's need.

#4: How Much Ice You Need?

This table from Manitowoc summarizes the amount each type of services will use:

Manitowoc ice machines dice ice

Verdict: Manitowoc UY-0140A NEO will produce enough ice to meet your small to medium sized restaurant's need.

#5: Warranty on Manitowoc UR 0140a

Good after sale support is an important factor when buying any product. This is one area the company is ahead of its competitor. The warranty on Manitowoc ice machines provides for both parts and labor coverage:

  • Ice machine evaporator: 5 years on parts and labor coverage.

  • Ice machine compressor: 5 Years on parts and 3 years on labor coverage.

  • On other ice machine parts, dispenser, and storage bin components: 3 Years on parts and labor coverage.

All new Manitowoc Foodservice equipment also comes with KitchenCare™. This is like a car warranty to help optimize your Manitowoc Ice Machines. Let them look after the technical details. Or discuss your everyday concerns and give support to meet your operational needs. You can choose which service you need for your restaurant business from either:

  • StarCare: With a warranty & lifetime service with certified OEM parts, global parts inventory, and performance audit.

  • ExtraCare: Come with a 24 hour, 7 days a week support.

  • LifeCare: Will give advice on the installation & equipment placement, and maintenance schedule. You get access to the KitchenConnect™ and MenuConnect program.

Verdict: Manitowoc UY-0140A has enough warranty period for both parts and labor. Plus the extra support from KitchenCare™ program.

Pros and Cons

Let us now summarize the above features and functions with the list of Pros and Cons:

Manitowoc UY-0140A PROS  

  • Easy to install, no need for more plumbing parts.

  • Compact design with removable bin and low profile construction. It will fit anywhere within your restaurant.

  • Front ventilation for convenient air inlet and outlet.

  • Simplified food zone is easy to clean and has rounded corners. Key components are outside the food zone.

  • Delay function gives you the option to slow down ice production.

  • Can produce 132 lbs. of half-dice ice in a 24 hour period. At any one time can store up to 90 lbs. of ice.

  • Safety Limit Feature include the high-pressure cut-out and built-in safety limits. It stops the ice machine if conditions
    arise leading to a major component failure.

  • Ergonomically designed large capacity scoop - included.

  • Dishwasher-Safe Air Filter. This is for easier cleaning to remove lint, grease, and other air contaminants.

  • 3 and 5-year warranty. See detail below. 

  • Manitowoc Finance. If you need financing they offer low-rate, fast approval financing on Manitowoc Ice Machines.

  • National Sanitation Foundation (NSF) certified. Most municipalities need kitchen equipment to be NSF certified. Only then will they issue a business permit.

  • ETL listed i.e. Manitowoc Ice Machines UY-0140A NEO was independently tested and meets the relevant published standard. (ETL stands for Electronic Testing Laboratories).

  • AHRI Performance Certified. Manitowoc Ice Machines UY-0140A NEO meets the commercial refrigeration equipment's performance standards. (AHRI stands for Air Conditioning, Heating, & Refrigeration Institute).

  • Energy Star Certified. Manitowoc Ice Machines UY-0140A certified as energy efficient ice machine. NEO models use 10% less energy and 25% less water than comparable models. Energy Star is supported by the U.S. Department of Energy and Environmental Protection Agency.
manitowoc ice machines certification

Manitowoc UY-0140 CONS

  • The compressor can be quite noisy, which is typical for an air-cooled compressor.

  • Need room to breathe and a cooler environment. Otherwise, it will not function well (typical of air-cooled).

  • Only one ice cube size - half dice ice. Regular, full-size dice, tubular nugget size, and flake available in other Manitowoc models.

  • Easy access to ice bin can be a disadvantage if not well controlled. Moreover reaching to scoop the ice can be a sanitary issue. Allow only designated staff access to prevent possible cross-contamination.

  • Only one color: Currently available only in Stainless Steel.

Preventive Maintenance - Use Water Filter

Water filter fitted with scale inhibitor is a must for your ice machine. Hard water with the dissolved calcium and magnesium can build up scales. The consequences are higher maintenance cost and frequent breakdown of your ice machine. Check my article on the Aquasana Water Filter System for the foodservice industry here.

Manitowoc ice machines are not fitted with scale inhibitor water filter. But is available as an optional item. The best deal during a promotion - you get it free!

2017 Best in Class Awards

Manitowoc Ice Machines again won 2017 Best in Class' Awards for Ice Machines.

Every year the publication, 'Foodservice Equipment and Supplies' (FSE), will get its subscribing dealers, operators, and consultants to help them in the survey.

They are to evaluate the equipment on seven key features that are critical in their purchasing decisions.

These features are:

  • The product value

  • It's quality

  • The design and aesthetics

  • Service and support

  • Sales representation

  • Product inventory and availability

  • The product information availability

Manitowoc Ice Machines not only won the 2017 'Overall Best in Class' in icemaker category but also won for the past thirteen years. This is a tough act to follow!

Verdict: With its long history of quality, support, and innovation, Manitowoc ice machines is a reliable and durable brand to support your restaurant business.

Manitowoc Foodservice Inc. the Company Behind Manitowoc Ice Machines

Manitowoc Foodservice is a subdivision of The Manitowoc Company Inc. a manufacturer of cranes. Founded in 1902, the parent company has its headquarter in Manitowoc, Wisconsin.

Just after WW2, it branched into commercial refrigeration equipment. It subsequently spin-off the food service equipment operations and had it publicly listed on March 4, 2016.

Verdict: Manitowoc Ice Machines, produced by a company with a strong manufacturing background. It has 23 global brands. 12 of these brands, including  Manitowoc Ice Machines, are either #1 or #2  in their respective global markets.

My Final Opinion of Manitowoc UY-0140A NEO

An ice maker is an important part of your restaurant's equipment. If you choose the wrong brand/model it will be an expensive mistake and you might also lose on the downtime.

Again, Manitowoc Ice Machines have full warranty and support. It has been in the business for over 70 years. Furthermore, if you go through the features in Manitowoc UY-0140A NEO, it satisfies all the checklist. Listing that a restaurant owner must go through before buying an ice maker.

Some of the more important features are value for money, the cost of operation and maintenance, easy installation and cleaning. And will it meet your daily production requirements?

For these reasons, Manitowoc UY-0140A NEO is a popular ice maker and one of the top product in its class. It is value for money and therefore, recommended this product.

Where to Buy for the Best Deal

At Amazon.com this Manitowoc Ice Machines gives you an option to buy with a 12 Month Financing with no interest for 12 months if paid in full in 12 months. Check it out here (showing the UY-0310A model)

Manitowoc Ice Machines Video

Check out this Manitowoc NEO cleaning procedure video. Cleaning is easy for this machine!

Any Comments?

Are you a user of Manitowoc Ice Machines and the NEO series? We like to hear from you about your experience and comments about the product. Or if you have anything to say about ice machines in general. Feel free to comment below

Thanks for sharing.



  1. Great article and awesome review. Very detailed and in depth. Great use of video and pictures to help with the overall review. I'm impressed with the ice machine. Not too pricey at all. My question to you is how long does the season discount last? What is the most popular type of ice? I am thinking its half diced but no I draw a blank. This sounds like it's a workhorse of an ice machine.

  2. Hi, Robert. Yep, this Manitowoc UR 0140A NEO is a workhorse within its range. And with its reasonable price, it is very popular with most restaurants. The offer and special promotions varies with various suppliers. If you lock into eTundra site, or subscribe to their email list, you will be notified of any offers which is quite often.The most popular type of ice? It depends on each establishment but half diced, I think, is the most popular. Different shapes have its own function. For example, the crescent cube (by Hoshizaki brand) because of its curved side allows it to fill a glass better. This translate to more ice but less drink. Hence, more profit! But if I am the customer I will feel cheated. 'Cos after a few gulps, the drink is finish and I might have to re-order!

  3. What a thorough review this is. My kids work in restaurants in manager positions and often talk of opening their first store together. I'm going to pass this on to them... A review like this could save them so much time and prevent them from purchasing an ice machine that is subpar. (I'd like to have this machine in my house! :) Thanks for this!

  4. Hi, Jackie. thanks for the kind words and thanks for the share. I hope your kids will open up their restaurants soon and don't forget to serve the best coffee!Having this machine in your house sound like a great idea :-)

  5. Great information thanks..

    I am looking around at options when it comes to icing machines as one of my friends has his own bar.

    We live in Rhodes Greece and it is very hot here in the summer and ice is essential for the customers.

    I like the look of this model and I also like the fact it has a self cleaning system too. Sometimes the cleaning can take a lot of time especially when it is busy!

    Great price too by the look of it. I will be coming back for more information.

    Thanks so much!


  6. Hi, Chris. This workhorse, Manitowoc Ice Machines UR 0140A NEO, is worth buying and I don't think you will regret. For the size and price, it is a good fit for your friend's bar. Thanks for dropping by and hoping to see you again soon. Cheers.

  7. Ice machines are useful components in any restaurant setup. This review will benefits many would be cafe owners to decide on the best ice machine for their business.

  8. We don't have this brand here in my country. Any other good models you can suggest?

  9. Hi, Spencer. Many restaurants and coffee shops serve hot and cold drinks. So the right ice machine is important to serve quality ice and should not be out of stock during operation hours. Some operators find ice machine an expensive and unnecessary component for their initial operation. I hope this review will convince them otherwise. Thanks, Spencer for sharing your thoughts.

  10. Denis, there are many good brands but the price will determine if it is a good buy. As you didn't tell me which country you are from, I am not able to help you more, except to suggest that you google for this.

  11. Wow! Superb post... Really first time i read this types of blog, now i have more information about commercial ice machine.. Thank you so much..!!